tv The Stream 2017 Ep 172 Al Jazeera October 27, 2017 7:32am-8:01am AST
being killed in violence during kenya's repeated presidential election voting has been disposed in four counties due to the violence the election commission estimates a forty eight percent voter turnout in the election boycotted by the main opposition . us president donald trump has declared opioid addiction a public health emergency the government will now have more power to address the issue or more freedom to change legislation it's estimated more than sixty four thousand americans died last year due to the opioid addiction and overdose catalonians president has refused to call for an early election. he hasn't received enough guarantees from madrid that it won't impose direct rule if a new election is held the spanish senate is due to vote on friday on whether to trigger article one five five which would allow madrid to directly administer catalonia. u.s. secretary of state rex tillerson has expressed concern over reported atrocities against the ring get in rocky in state to listen had
a phone call with the army chief senior general being out on thursday at miramar security forces to support the government doing the violence and allowing the safe return of ethnic ringer who fled the area you can follow those stories on our website at al-jazeera dot com is updated twenty four hours a day i'll be back with more news in thirty minutes to stay with us here the stream is next. as native amazonian is increasingly struggling to survive in today's world and. talk to al-jazeera travels to brazil to meet leaders of endangered tribes. and those trying to protect them at this time. i am really could be and here in the stream today journalist and author mad t.v.
joins us to discuss his new book on the life and death of eric garner an arm to black man who was killed in twenty fourteen by a white police officer in the united states. if. those were ever garners last words spoken in desperation after a new york city police officer put him in an illegal chokehold that cost him his life his final words became the rallying cry for the black lives matter movement in the us formed in the wake of high profile deaths of unarmed black men at the hands of mostly white police joining us now to discuss the eric garner slice and the policies that he says led to gardeners that. the author of i can't breed a killing on bay street and a contributing editor of rolling stone magazine welcome to the stream and i want to start with two tweets from
a person who's actually read your book this is from erica out of arizona who writes reading eric garner book i judge coroner too harshly i think she told the stream her biggest take away that i had judged him more harshly for not seeming respectable than was warranted now matt you spent nearly three years writing about the life and death of eric garner tell our international audience describe for us who was eric garner. her car was a. small time dealer in untaxed cigarettes. and father of six. criminal history you had been in prison for dealing crack but when you got out. he was looking for something that was less dangerous and. less likely to our prison time than we had it says that he doubts that use trying harder to stay with them so he was trying to get out of
crime but he found it hard to get a job and so what he ended up doing was selling the tax cigarettes which is typically it was that you were going to meet or a fence. sitter big party guy very funny contradictory slow. but well liked everywhere everybody that i talked to at the park what are leaving the store owners area i pulled up a picture here this from the new york daily news of garner and his wife now the the the video that we showed in the beginning of the program was the one that i think most people around the world recognize and know garner by this picture maybe less so you have all these anecdotes in your book that are really interesting you have his pizza eating preferences you have his spending habits or lack there of you have things about his knack for numbers i don't know is there any other that that made
it through your book what stuck out to you the most what was what was your favorite anecdote. people told me lots of funny stories about him right off the bat. but pete the biggest name is i heard one of the first days was that he would go in and order a whole pizza and fold it in half you know like a taco so his eating habits were kind of legendary on the street up there and he also had this unbelievable the syllabi with numbers you miss that actually kind of your tickets of people on the street you would go around challenging people. to try to stump him about sports it's things and things like that he was always right. and you know he would he would say things like you know cool that. he was challenge is not something and about his clothes he had you know a little bit of a sloppy if your hands but that was there was a reason for that. he was kind of phobic about buying new things for himself so he
is you want every dollar that you are good with kids so he would wear clothes so they almost that lead fell foul of his body. it was but that's how he felt most children. so you know so much to add comes across in the book with all of the interviews he dined with the people who made appearances on eric's life those who were in his neighborhood his family members clearly was very well researched. what i wonder that was what was your inspiration behind that's what what was it that sparked you teevan get into researching eric garner so life and was there any hesitation at all given you're a white man you know definitely. i had done a story. a previous book was about the criminal justice system it was about white people and wall street don't go to jail and that i was hearing. you know these guys who are do a billion dollar fraud it's. two people who do go to jail in this country and how
they go to jail and why i was interested in the whole concept of community policing to. again with and. and so that was sort of my initial interest in the case and yes i did house and trepidation about it as i went along you know thinking you know as a white person as a white man and by the reverse and tell the story. but the more i thought about it it's not just a book about her carter about that he put that he lived in and i'm it's also a book about the criminal justice system. about the bureaucracy that was behind those that justice system and the politicians and which are almost entirely a construct of white america so it's a white story too and i think it's or for people like me to own a little bit more i pulled up my screen here one of the things that we saw circulating in the days after gardner's killing and since this is from franchisee on twitter justice for eric garner
a hash tag i can't even you can see that illustration there those were his last words said several times to life seventeen twenty point teen so that was caught on videotape but tell us about the events leading up to this encounter with police this day what happened well one of the amazing things that i found was that eric garner wasn't actually selling cigarettes that day. but the evidence strongly suggests and you can construct this even from police statements but i also talked to probably twenty five people who were there that day and so i put together a timeline of what do you still make. and i know that he was on well that day and that he spent most of the afternoon in a bathroom he came out of the bathroom he broke up a fight in the street and he was leaning up against the wall catch its breath when the police approached him now when i think kept it was that. somebody like a lieutenant it is
a local precinct wrote i earlier that saw garter and then told these to serbia. so. when they went back there they had a mission to arrest. you know unluckily for everybody it. had not actually been committed a crime. so it was. that mentions that with the video we produce that you know you're arresting me and you know what i'm actually doing. i have a suite here from sippy who of course saw that video and says these pictures disgusts me absolutely no regard to the man's existence so disturbing no she tweets this october twenty sixth twenty seventeen of course right now for our show this happened nearly three years ago i want to bring molina into the conversation now she's professor and chair of patrick and studies at california state university in los angeles but we now welcome to the show now we've seen these killings on camera
time and time again you were involved early on for the black lives matter has anything changed anything since this incident since the killing of eric garner that makes you hopeful. yeah i mean i get great hope from the way in which we as community members have well lead ourselves we've claimed our own power we've said we understand that the system of policing in this country is really designed to produce these outcomes and so it's up to us as community members to imagine something that actually brings in a real safety for our community so i think the conversations around you know how do we create safe communities by having livable wage jobs by having resources for communities rather than pouring doubters and to a policing system that's meant to brutalizing killa so you mention the police and system so with that i want to bring in the voice of a former police officer detective in fact this is garrick waller former stream cast
on a show about reforming the police from the inside he's now retired but this is what he told us about that policing system broken windows. when i was when i was a young officer. i used to i used to think people were but as you grow of seniority you see it doesn't work i mean the best thing to work is the office is just offices offices just i mean somebody does something small kron so tons of best advice is to give them break sometimes a number from that group you can't go and locking up everybody for every single thing doesn't work is not going to prove that it's not going to improve can be police relations it's not going to do anything but increase the numbers in the precinct and that's basically what stemmed from so matt he mentions there are broken windows and that of course is a theory that by fighting smaller crimes fixing things neighborhoods you could then
detract and deter away from more serious crimes of course it's been heavily criticised but he has a police officer and an african-american one of that says in the beginning he thought that was a good thing how do you link that in with their daughter stuff. well eric carter had the misfortune to be a minor criminal at the time. exactly what his policies are being ramped up and they were targeting people exactly like him. and. you know that in an earlier period of history i think policemen of terms maybe a white guy to somebody like him or would have focused more on the drug dealers in the locker or more serious offenders but but because of this this is the space regime and also coincidentally because of that specific incident on that day you know when those two officers were sent. to to pick him up one of the things that was explained to me by their former officer was that you can just tell he got to
walk around the corner and that the sort of broken windows era that you have to get a number you have to get an arrest you have to get proof that you did something or that the whole regime was this designed to create with a call activity and so they needed to arrest him in order to satisfy that is the mission and that was. and i think it's a really important we understand broken windows policing is not something new it's something that has been you know there's a renewed commitment in a more extreme version of broken windows policing but it's important we understand that this is a concept that was assured in one thousand nine hundred eighty two right where there was this theory that if we look at minor crime will be able to clean up neighborhoods for gentrifiers and i think what matt does really well in the book is talk about the relationship between over policing of black brown and poor communities and the a string in. kind of new gentrifiers into communities that we
used to reside and so that's what we're talking about when we talk about communities like staten island communities in south los angeles communities throughout urban america. is this notion that somehow broken windows policing is really fighting crime when really they're fighting is black brown and poor people on behalf of white folks who are you know more affluent and want to move in and take over these communities to bring this in from one see what watching the show he says hold justices system whole justice systems need to be reformed even black officers targeted more minority drivers than whites so this is more than just discrimination this person puts but i want to bring this headline in nexis is from the los angeles times in new york major crime complaints when cops took a break from proactive policing that of course in quotes and this is from september
of this year does this mean that the broken windows policies are jane ching do you see that happening at all. well i mean it's just this is just six or change you know if you're a member of it it's everything that you hear about crime stats in a city like new york you know there's a stick with a grain of salt because the police are responsible not just for. you know deterring crime. they're also responsible for monitoring compiling statistics but it's russ's one of the things which was stop and frisks use even though it's struck down in court they claimed almost immediately that you know something like ninety five percent subset. have been done away with you know anecdotally you know you're here at the street but they're still doing the same things it's just that they're not sure about these forms that more so it's hard to really say. yes or right policing isn't really changing there i think what matz pointing to is they're
getting as new rules come into play individual officers and entire departments are getting. kind of smart about how they play what they do and so i think what's really required when we talk about creating safe communities and i don't want to confine our conversation to just policing because if we also look at the data what creates safe communities it's not spending more on police it's actually investing in resources if we look at eric garner right if we think about what could have happened as a returning citizen if we poured resources into programs that could get him a livable wage job where he could support his six children then you know that would be a different outcome right if we could create conditions so the rest of the folks in the neighborhood that he found himself a part of could you know have resources and really be able to do the work that they needed to do then we would have
a different outcome instead we're pouring our dollars and in most major cities we're spending more than fifty percent of general funds have to. x. dollars on police on straight up police if we spent those dollars on afterschool programs on jobs programs on mental health resources on health resources we would have much much safer communities so i think in response to that tweet it's not just about forming police it's about transforming the way in which communities in their dollars and elevating humanity above all else here someone who might agree with you this is someone watching live on you tube mr potts he says police should be made to attend public meetings with the communities they work in just one idea here but we got a specific question this is for you matt this is from ariya who says she she she hones in on one specific thing that came out of the killing of eric garner the chokehold she says so how was the band chokehold allowed why wasn't the abusive officer
arrested punished or fired officers can do illegal techniques this is an international community kind of watching this in the us seeing this and wondering how does this allowed to happen. sure this is going to be a complicated answer because it's a it's a convoluted thing to try to explain how disciplined process works with police officers but. typically internal police discipline. has to wait for the criminal justice system to first play out so in other words they had to do so the side first whether or not they were good or arrest him and charge him with a crime before the police could discipline him and go through that process so he this case went to a grand jury and they used kind of this ancient technique where they. convened a special grand jury to call fifty witnesses. and the suspicion is that this actually put out a defense case story and a grand jury and months later the grand jury decided not to indict the officer so
that's how he was arrested the question of why was he disciplined well the city did just. hold a complaint against him and rule that he did use it and technique but it's going to be a long time we have to wait before the federal authorities decide whether or not to file charges civil rights charges before they can go through the discipline i think that with a thin man can say thank you for explaining never go into the audience a million ahead. and that actually varies from state to state and county to county so in los angeles it's actually the exact opposite that the disciplinary process can happen first and then the criminal process actually waits on that disciplinary process what's common throughout the united states however is that the criminal justice process and the police disciplinary process are tied together and they
shouldn't be right so district attorneys prosecutors are basically and bed with police departments they rely on them for every other case and so you have a reluctance on the part of prosecutors to prosecute police when they commit crimes right and you also have police departments that want to protect their officers above all else so we still have daniel pants alayo really patrolling the same streets. working for the same department where he is basically he committed an act of terrorism on on a neighborhood and he's still out there on the streets right and that's common throughout the united states very very rarely i think last year there were six officers who were even charged in these killings of folks right and that doesn't mean that they were convicted six charged period and so when you think about this it really kind of makes communities especially black brown and for communities
extremely vulnerable to police there was however one arrest in the murder of their garner and it was the arrest of ramzi or to the man who was brave enough courageous enough to film the murder and bring it to the public's eyes so that's an additional injustice that we need to be aware of that ramsey order is in jail right now and we need to think about the continued targeting of people who dare to step out and not of course you talked around for a bit in that that's included in your book here. of course he's on in jail on what the police say are unrelated charges and what he believes are related to his filming the only reason we know about what happened to eric garner some might say is because it was caught on video here's a tweet from sarah murdoch who says please address social media coverage and the but if it's in detriment of reproducing images a public beilenson against people of color so big topic there but not it's there's a catch twenty two because we know about this because it was caught on video but
after this video we've seen other videos another video and then we hear that nothing happens there are no indictments talk to us about the significance of this being caught on camera well i think it was very significant because for the cell phone age you know the police routinely denied these things that happened you know it's your friends your had been there that day we would never heard about this case because what it would have been written up as somebody who had was in poor health who died of natural causes story routine arrests. and people we've never heard of it. but you know because of the incontrovertibly nature of these videos i think it's forced everybody around the country to know to come face to face with what like a graph communities of known all along which is that this is routine and that these
things are. happening regularly there's a significant moment in ramsey's video where he kind of loses sight of car at the end and he you can see that he's kind of not focusing on it and not terribly worried and the reason for that is that it's happened so often that he didn't think it was an emergency you will do that and it seemed just like that a week earlier of all that other guy just so. you know. videos are crucial it's also. i want to read a comment we got via you tube i'll give this one to you molina this is from daniel he says i think that police violence is a problem everywhere a couple of days ago here in rio de janeiro a tourist was killed by police at a checkpoint because her car didn't stop the mindset of shooting first and asking questions later is ingrained in police departments everywhere that said i want to i want to give you a comment from a former police officer when we followed
a bit earlier this is derek waller who says being a police officer is not an easy task no officer leaves his house and says today i'm going to choke or shoot someone to death but it continues to happen and outside agency needs to do the investigations and officers need to be held more accountable for their actions where do you see this conversation going from here. i mean there is plenty of conversation around police reform i think that we're we're seeing the best conversation happen is in places like newark new jersey places like jackson mississippi where they're talking holistically about reimagining public safety and so in cities like newark led by raspberry rocca they're willing to invest dollars in crime prevention and intervention rather than overspending on police i think that the commenter on you tube is absolutely right that.
you know police are trained to see especially in particular communities as targets if we could go into the entire history of policing in this country which you know an international audience might not be aware of but american policing evolved out of the system of slave catching so what we see now as officers police officers initially began in the united states as patty rollers so they were trained to target black people who were running away from their plantations and bring them back to their plantation owners and i know that people will say well that's a long time ago but we always need to look at the roots of institutions because some institutions require transformation not just reform. thank you so much for joining us i will in here with this tweet this is from you matt says to the daughter of eric garner erica thank you so much you are so important to help me
understand your father in this case and what wasn't being said or done couldn't join us for this conversation but she's been tweeting out a link to the show so we think her that and for keeping this in the news because i can't breathe a killing on bay street and all the time we have here but i want to think much and million of the lead of course our community for joining us as always you can watch the stream of law. i want you to try to get your comments questions lie then on the air with an actual conversation continues online with hash tag.
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